Projects In Production

Baldwin, Cote earn Portland Ballet awards

By Jim Kanak

This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
August 19, 2008 10:40 AM

OGUNQUIT - Stuart Nudelman of Ogunquit and Blake Baldwin of Kennebunk are recipients of this year's Dance Inspiration Award. The award is given annually by the Portland Ballet to honor community members who support the art of dance and the Portland Ballet.

"Stuart and Blake have donated thousands of hours," said Leslie Gibbons, the Ballet's Director of Development. "Stuart's done photography for us for 20 years. His photos adorn the walls of our offices. He's made such a difference. Blake's a relative newcomer. But he's become another angel. He videotapes everything for us."

Gibbons said Baldwin's videotapes allow the Ballet to capture the choreography of dances for future review. He also edits tapes of performances so the Ballet can use them in competitions.

"They both are among the nicest people you can meet," Gibbons said. "We seem to pick the good ones."

In addition to his photography work, Nudelman has also been a member of the Ballet's Board of Directors for 10 years, serving two years as co-president. "It's a great honor to be acknowledged by the Portland Ballet," he said. "My involvement is one of great respect, appreciation, and love."

Nuldelman said he believed the ballet's approach to dancing was commendable. "One of the things that impresses me about the ballet and got me involved is their attitude toward education and the well being of their students," he said. "That's the most important thing. In a competitive society, they are one example of sanity and proper values."

One difference in the award this year is the gift that accompanies it. Nudelman also had something to do with that change.

"In the past, the award has been a beautiful framed and signed photo by Stuart," Gibbons said. "We thought that wouldn't be appropriate this year. So this year we'll be giving a painting by Jan Roberson. Each recipient will receive a painting by her, a signed, framed work of art."

The awards were presented at the ballet's annual seaside cocktail party on Aug. 28.